Ricci admits his VAR error at the 2018 World Cup

In an interview with SporTV on Thursday, 26 July 2018, Brazilian referee Sandro Ricci admitted that he made mistakes during the World Cup game between England and Tunisia in the group stage of the competition. At the time, he was the video assistant referee (VAR) of the match.
The recently retired referee explained that a penalty kick should have been should have been awarded for a foul within the penalty area against Harry Kane and that even after reviewing the play, the penalty kick was not given in favour of England, which was a mistake in his opinion. Despite the misunderstanding, England won by 2-1. "I'm very comfortable because criticizing my own job is easier. There was a hold from the Tunisian defender on Kane. The first feeling I had it was a penalty, then I looked for a better angle, but sometimes it is better not to look again. I should have immediately called the referee (Wilmar Roldan). Instead of checking what I had seen, I looked for an image that would allow me to support the referee's decision. That was when I found an arm of Kane on the opponent and that was what gave me the chance to support the referee, but it was a mistake, it was a clear penalty. It was one of the three errors of the group phase recognized by FIFA", said the Brazilian. Ricci also said that the referees who acted as VAR in the World Cup were directed not to get caught up in small fouls and cases that can be interpreted, but rather in clear and obvious situations. "The VAR should not stick to small fouls because otherwise he will review everything. Every part of the area always has a little push; it has to be something very clear. At Kane's check, I went to get pictures to defend the referee's decision; that was a mistake that I should not have committed. The initial orientation was only for clear mistakes. No one accepted the VAR to intervene absurdly, but those situations of interpretation that were also clear, the VAR did not intervene. During the competition, FIFA began to change the process, giving the referee the opportunity to look at the play for the second time. And it happened’, he explained. The Brazilian stressed that the pressure on the VAR is much greater, because the video assistant referees have at their disposal all angles of the play. "The referee on the field has in his favour the criterion of interpretation and the time, the need to decide based on only one angle of view. The referee's error is understandable. In the video, there is no forgiveness. You have all angles and you cannot go wrong. The pressure on the VAR is much higher", he said.

Foul on Miranda (Brazil – Switzerland)
"That moment took Miranda out of the game. For me it was a penalty, especially in slow motion. The slow motion was to see the point of contact, but slow motion is also used to see the player's movement; on the fast camera you do not see a malicious movement".

Foul on Gabriel Jesus (Brazil – Belgium)
For Ricci, the VAR should have signaled foul in the Gabriel Jesus situation in the match against Belgium, when the striker was knocked over in the area. "There were two VAR interventions in the second phase and it should have been a third one in Gabriel's situation”.

VAR in Brazil?
"At FIFA, the bank is FIFA; at Conmebol, it is Conmebol. In Spain it is La Liga, because it is La Liga that makes the competition. CBF had a profit of 50 million last year, according to the Globo. I do not understand why not take that profit and not invest it in the VAR. I think CBF will eventually use it in Brazil. If the clubs cannot afford it, let the CBF do it. The CBF's mission is to promote football and thus promote football and justice".

World Cup Final
"Yes, I had hopes, we never know. We were among the candidates. Our Brazilian trio had made a good World Cup; in fact it is a process of choice and FIFA opted for the Argentine trio".

Source: RefNews